I woke up a few days ago feeling like I was on top of the world. I made a bucket list of things that made me happy to think about. I want to climb a huge rock ( even though I am terrified of heights!) , write a book ( God knows about what ) , I want to start a band ( with the minimal musical talent that I have ) and paint the longest mural in the world ( with dragons on it and cats and cat dragons!).
Then somewhere along the way my energy waned and I started feeling that old friend creep in. It’s been weeks since she visited me and I honestly thought she was done with me, but those horrible irrational thoughts permeated my brain to a point where I became them. Why can’t I make this stop?
I thought I was better. I thought the worst was done. I thought I was ready to go off medication and be somewhat normal again. But she just won’t let me go. I can’t be happy. I can’t be like everyone else.
I sat in my backyard with my face in my hands, hiding away from everyone.
“I am so tired. Tired of having to fight everyday and for what? To be this person who will never be like everyone else? Who will always have this demon living inside of me looking for the smallest crack to slip in? Is this as good as it gets?!”
This is what it feels like sometimes. It takes me a moment, sometimes longer, to realise that I have made progress. It’s like a chronic physical illness. It just affects some people that way, and even if I do face these horrible dark moments I do have so many things to hold on to.
I remember watching an episode of dr.who once where he said, to paraphrase:
Life is made up of a pile of good things and a pile of bad things, the good things can’t take away the bad things but neither can the bad take away from the good. So pile up as many good things as you can.
There are so many things that I have been doing for my mental health and sometimes when I fall it feels exhausting. I’m in therapy, I’m on medication, I exercise, I quit my bad habits. I am trying so hard, but I still fall down. It feels absolutely awful in those moments and I want to give up. I don’t want to do this anymore.
What helps me through that is my pile of good things. Whenever I have a really good moment no matter how small, like even the feeling of waking up from a good nap or my puppy licking my face, or laughing at a really stupid joke with my sisters, I take a step back, close my eyes and take a mental picture of that moment. I save that feeling for when I hit rock bottom. So even in that dark hole , I have a pin prick of light to look towards.
As 2020 comes to a close and we take inventory of the year behind us ,I’m sure along with all the uncertainties that hit us hard, there is a tiny pile of good things. It may be really really small this year but let’s try to hold onto that and hold on to one resolution; let’s stock up our good pile, as high as we can in 2021.